Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and traps heat in the atmosphere. Without it and other greenhouses gasses, Earth would be a frozen world. But humans have burned so much fuel that there is about 30% more carbon dioxide in the air today than there was about 150 years ago, and earth is becoming a warmer place. In fact, ice cores show us that there is now more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than tree has been in the last 420,000 years.
2. Carbon is a nonmetal that can bond with itself and many other chemical elements, forming
nearly ten million compounds.
3. Elemental carbon can take the form of one of the hardest substances (diamond) or one of the
4. Carbon is made in the interiors of stars, though it was not produced in the Big Bang.
5. Pure Carbon exists free in nature and has been known since prehistoric time.
How It Helps Each Level Of The Food Pyramid
Carbon Cycle Vocabulary
Photosynthesis; Process by which photoautotrophs trap solar energy and use it to make sugar and O2.
Resperation: Process where food molecules are broken down to produce energy and CO2.
Reservoir: Temporary holding place for Carbon.
Biosphere: Any area that supports life.
Atmosphere: CO2 resevoir
Biomass: Total mass of all biotic factors.
Fossil Fuels: Coal, oil,(petroleum), gas
Ocean Carbon: largest resovoir of Carbon.
Organic Molecule: Molecules that contain carbon.
Combustion: Process of burning.
Where is Carbon found?
Carbon is a Group 14 element and is distributed very widely in nature. It is found in abundance in the sun, stars, comets, and atmospheres of most planets.
Carbon is found free in nature in three allotropic forms: amorphous, graphite, and diamond. Graphite is one of the softest known materials while diamond is one of the hardest. Carbon, as microscopic diamonds, is found in some meteorites. Natural diamonds are found in ancient volcanic "pipes" such as found in South Africa. Diamonds are also recovered from the ocean floor off the Cape of Good Hope.